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Visa instructions for students at LILS

Updated on June 11, 2023

Most of our students choose between the four visa options below to stay legally in Thailand. The visa options cannot be combined, you must choose one.



  1. No visa at all - Many citizens may stay in Thailand for 30 days without a visa (please check at your embassy/consulate how many days you can get on arrival). You can extend this residence permit for another 30 days at an immigration office in Thailand. Some airlines require an exit ticket from Thailand within 30 days to let passengers on board without a visa so check this before you travel if you were planning to stay longer than 30 days.

  2. Tourist visa - There are two types of tourist visas to Thailand; Single Entry and Multiple Entry. A Single Entry visa is valid for 60 days and can be extended at an Immigration office in Thailand for another 30 days. With a Multiple Entry visa, you can enter Thailand as many times as you want during six months and on each entry, you can stay a maximum of 60 days in the country. You must therefore make a trip to the border at least every 60 days. 

  3. Non-Immigrant ED visa - The student visa process is a bit complicated and require a lot of documents, please contact us for more information.

  4. Non-Immigrant O (Spouse/Family) - you who have connections to Thailand can apply for this visa type. For example, if you have a Thai parent, are married to a Thai, or have children with a Thai citizen. You need to prove your connection to Thailand, so check with the embassy or consulate which documents you need to bring with you for your visa application.


Please go to to get more information about what documents that are required for the different visas and if you are eligible to apply for a e-visa.

The official name of student visas in Thailand is “Non-Immigrant ED visa”, or “ED visa” for short. If you would find a job in Thailand, you would need to change your visa into a Non-Immigrant B as you are not allowed to work in Thailand while on a student visa.


An ED visa is issued for the duration of your course. You can enter Thailand on an ED visa before your course starts but preferably not more than 45 days ahead. You apply for the visa at a Thai Embassy or Consulate abroad. Most students apply in Vientiane or in their home countries. If you apply in Vientiane (Laos), please book an appointment at the Embassy/Consulate for your visa application.


Most Thai Embassies and Consulates will only issue Single Entry ED-visas (not multiple entries). If you have a single entry ED visa you will get 90 days stamped in your passport when you enter Thailand. When 90 days have passed, you will need to make an extension of your visa at Krabi Immigration for another 90 days.


You will continue to do 90 day extensions at Krabi Immigration for the duration of your course, but not longer than one year in total. If you would like to study longer you will need to apply for a new student visa abroad. Extensions can only be done in Krabi as the school is located here.


If you would get a Multiple Entry ED visa you will get 90 days stamped in your passport when you enter Thailand. You will then have to leave Thailand every 90 days in order to activate your next three months of visa. If you are not sure of the difference between an entry stamp and the visa sticker, please check with the school as it is important that you know which date you need to leave.


IMPORTANT: If you have a Single Entry ED visa you cannot leave Thailand without losing your visa. If you want to travel abroad, you need to get a Re-Entry Permit at an Immigration Office before you leave.


Preparation for ED visas

You need many documents in order to get your visa application approved. Please start your visa

application process at least 6 weeks before you intend to apply. Please check at your embassy if you can apply for your ED-visa online or not, or look at this page


Step 1.

  • Clear photo of your passport

  • Four new (not older than 6 months) identical photographs (passport photo) of you against a light background wearing proper clothes (no hat).

  • A filled in and signed application form to your course at LILS (you can pick up the form at our reception or we can send it to you by email)

  • A filled in and signed Personal History Check form (get from reception/email)

  • A filled in and signed Purpose of Attending the Course form (get from reception/email)

  • A proof of your accommodation in Thailand during your stay (please ask the school for more information or instruction)

  • A copy of any evidence of prior knowledge (if any), with its translation if the original document is not in English. High school, college, or university levels.

  • A note telling us where you plan to apply for your ED visa. If you are applying from abroad, please also write what date you will leave your country and the address where we should send your documents. For example, “I plan to apply for my ED visa at the Thai Consulate in Gothenburg, Sweden. I will leave Sweden on August 23rd.

Step 2.

Pay your course fee to LILS. Minimum three months course fee for the Standard Course or

three months deposit for the Intensive Course.


Step 3.

When we have received your documents and course fee, we will apply for an official letter of

approval for you at the Thai Ministry of Education. When we have got that document, we will add some more and send it to you by email. When you have received the documents and prepared the documents stated above and booked your flights and hotel you can start your online application for ED-Visa.


Please always check the Embassy's or Consulate's website or call them for the latest updates

regarding their visa application instructions. Thai rules change often, and each Thai Embassy apply the rules differently.

The ED visa application process online takes up to 15 workdays. At the Embassy it usually takes two days (hand in on Day 1 in the morning and get back in the afternoon on Day 2) but can be longer in high season. If your ED visa application would be declined, please contact us immediately so we can contact the Embassy or Consulate by phone and try to sort out the issue.


Step 4.

When you have got your ED visa you will get a 90-day stamp on arrival in Thailand. Remember this date. If you have a single-entry ED visa and need to make an extension, please tell us at least one month before your first 90 days expire so we can start to prepare the documents for your extension.

If you have a multiple entry ED visa you have to leave Thailand every 90 days. 10 minutes in another country is enough.



Your responsibility

It is your responsibility to check your visa expiry dates. If you overstay your visa you will have to

pay a fine (500 – 20 000 THB) to Immigration or be sent to the Immigration Detention Center

(similar to a prison). It is also your responsibility to hand in all applicable documents to us in time for us to prepare your ED visa application.

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